On a warm Friday night on the south coast, we delivered our YMCA Awards endorsed Ignite Disability Inclusion Training course to a group of eager volunteers at Worthing Hockey Club, who plan to start their own Flyerz section this season. Take a look into what a Flyerz inclusion training looks like and let us know if your club wants take part!

With eight keen and willing volunteers present, practical and educational activities were delivered in order to improve coach confidence when delivering inclusive hockey sessions. Commencing with a quick-fire quiz and a more in-depth look into the different types of disabilities, the learning cohort were immediately encouraged to adopt a mind-set focused on inclusion and adaptability.

The hockey pitch was calling and the group were thrust into communication games, creating opportunities to utilise numerous forms of communication within increasingly difficult scenarios. Our training tutor, Iestyn, believes this is a vital facet to both our training and disability coaching as a whole:

The ability to utilise numerous forms of communication is vital to creating an environment that is inclusive to all prospective and potential participants.We focus on taking away verbal communication, encouraging learners to be innovative in terms of gestures, body language and other non-verbal communication methods. Coaching at any level requires efficient communication, but is particularly pivotal within inclusive sessions where participants’ communication methods and capabilities can be extremely varied.

Receptive and keen to learn, the band of volunteers remained passionate and fervent long into the training session, constantly improving their adaptability within the given activities and scenarios – adaptability is a major part of disability-inclusive coaching, with the need to include participants with a range of abilities and disabilities – showcasing their new found awareness and knowledge. Worthing’s Josh Barron appreciated the worth of the training:

Access Sport’s Disability Inclusion Training was a great eye opener into the challenges that some people may face when attempting to play a sport that can come naturally to others.

As part of the workshop, volunteers are challenged to devise and deliver their own inclusive activity. Throughout the delivery, the course tutors will implement additional disabilities and/or scenarios to encourage the learners to use their adaptability and improved disability awareness. This includes any changes or amendments to the playing area and equipment, as well as the activity itself.

At the culmination of the training, club volunteers and coaches are better prepared to lead their own inclusive sessions – in this case Flyerz hockey – thus improving the provision of opportunities for disabled people in their community. Josh said:

All clubs and coaches should consider undergoing this training even if they are not yet capable of offering inclusive sessions. The techniques and ideas the session introduces can be extremely constructive in a more traditional sporting environment, thus leading to greater player development.

Worthing Flyerz launches on September 8th and the volunteers are primed and ready to provide a fully inclusive session to all.

We are always keen to engage other community hockey clubs in our Flyerz project, and can deliver our Ignite Disability Inclusion Training to your cohort of volunteers… FREE OF CHARGE!

Email [email protected] for more information.